Brisket w. Tzimmes, Braised Kale, and Rutabaga Kraut

30 Sep

Have been on the hunt for a good Brisket recipe and finally found one that I’d be happy to make year after year. This recipe comes from Pierce’s mom. It is all about the Tzimmes- which is like this sweet potato and prune mixture. And while I LOVE the taste of the chili sauce/can of coke brisket- I do like knowing exactly what’s in this one. And while it’s not shy on the sugar- there is essentially a caramel sauce for peet’s sake- I still feel like it’s probably less than in the coke/chili. Had some friends over for dinner and I served it w. some red wine braised kale, a quick rutabaga kraut and some cornichons to much on w. wine. I have to say- very well fitting accompaniments. See further down for recipes. Finished w. a refreshing watermelon sorbet- post to come.

5 pounds brisket of beef [can scale up or down. keep in mind that brisket does shrink.]

*** Addendum: I just made with 7.5 pd brisket and I’m not sorry about it. Remarkably it did not effect the cooking time. I also liberally salted the brisket the night before (leave overnight loosely covered in fridge), which I highly recommend to increase tenderness and flavor. Before cooking, I patted dry. Since it was such a large piece of meat, I kept the 1 tablespoon of salt in the tomato juice mixture and it worked out perfectly.

1 pound carrots

1 large  onion (2 small)

3 sweet potatoes, pared

4 white potatoes, pared

½ pound dried prunes

1 cup water

2½ tablespoons honey

1 tablespoon salt

1 cup fresh or canned tomato juice (i used the organic bottled juice kind)

½ cup brown sugar (used light brown) [can scale slightly back on this]

step 2:

3 tablespoons granulated white sugar

2 tablespoons water

1½ cups cold water

1. Trim most of the fat from the meat. Slice the carrots crosswise. Slice onions thinly. Cut potatoes into medium-sized chunks. [cut my carrots big- like size of my potato chunks).

2. Place meat in the bottom of the large pot, arrange layers of white potatoes, prunes, sweet, onion and carrots.

3. Mix water, honey, salt, tomato juice and brown sugar, pour over meat/veg; simmer for 1 hour.

4. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

5. Heat 3 tablespoons granulated sugar and 2 tablespoons water over high heat until the sugar caramelizes (wait until it turns that amber caramel color), then pour cold water over the caramelized sugar. Add liquid to the tzimmes.

6. Place tzimmes in the oven and bake for 2 hours at 325. Can even let it cool in the oven but not necessary. That might be overkill but you really just can’t over cook it. My butcher says he does his for like 7 or 8 hours. That’s right. I have a butcher. How stoked am I. Cook until the texture you want- mine ended up like the pull apart. Mrs. Weiner also told me that the stovetop cooking which is a bit strange for brisket- might also contribute to that pull apart effect]

As always brisket is good- some say best- the next day. I put the whole pot in fridge, left over night. Skimmed off some fat. and reheated in the oven at 300. Every time it just cooks more and gets better and better.



Mark Bittman’s Red Wine Braised Kale (Collards or other greens)

1 bunch regular curly kale. Can also use 1 ½ pounds other greens- like collards, washed and trimmed.

¼ cup olive oil

4 cloves garlic, mined

salt and pepper to taste

½ cup chicken stock (I subbed of the fat/stock of the brisket mixed w. water)

½ cup dry red wine

i also added a pinch of red chili flakes. I did towards the end- but if I thought of it sooner, would have added w. garlic

1.tear or chop greens into small pieces. Put oil in large skillet, heat on med-high. Add garlic, and when it colors (just barely and gets fragrant), the green. Toss frequently- cooking 3 or 4 minutes.

2. reduce heat to med, add stock, salt and pepper. Cover and cook for 5 mins.

3. remove cover, add wine. Cook uncovered, stirring frequently, about 5 mins, until almost all liquid has evaporated and greens tender.


Rutabaga Quick-Kraut

I got some Rutabaga from a CSA pick up- and this recipe was exactly what I was looking for. Something fresh and vinegary to cut the density of the brisket. Found through a long-winded google search. Eventually landed on this at

My rutabaga was a bit big so I tampered w. the measurements slightly

2 heaping cups of rutabaga (less than 1 whole big rutabaga)

1 tablespoon honey

1 tablespoon plus 1 tsp apple cider vinegar

2 tablespoons whole-grain mustard [looks like a lot but actually not that strong tasting]

salt and pepper to taste

1. Heat honey, apple-cider vinegar and mustard in skillet to combine (on med heat).

2. Add grated rutabaga to pan.

3. Saute on med-high heat until rutabaga is tender and lightly browned [just a few minutes]

4. Add in small amounts of oil as needed to keep rutabaga from sticking to the pan. [I used grapeseed oil but I’m sure olive or whatever you have is fine. I think it is good for taste- not just sticking issue.]

Tastes great room temp.


One Response to “Brisket w. Tzimmes, Braised Kale, and Rutabaga Kraut”

  1. Anonymous September 30, 2012 at 10:19 pm #

    tzimmes down now. also, this looks delish

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